Feel-good, bittersweet films have the potential to transform the lives of viewers within a span of hours.

When everything is about commercial cinema trying to mint money, it is these kinds of movies that put our faith back in the cinema of art. 

Good Grief is a fresh American film, now streaming on Netflix. And as the name might suggest, it is a story about grief laced with a romantic drama that’s bittersweet, witty, and heartfelt. 

Here is my review of the 100-minute film.

Good Grief Synopsis

Marc loses his husband, Oliver, in a road accident. Now, he must survive the emotional setbacks that follow. 

Image Credits: Netflix

However, that’s not the only affliction for him. A bigger tragedy awaits as Marc copes up with the loss, helped by his best friends.

Directed by Daniel Levy, it stars Daniel Levy (Marc), Ruth Negga (Sophie), Himesh Patel (Thomas), Luke Evans (Oliver), and Arnaud Valois (Theo), among others. 

What Works for Good Grief?

Grief has many sides to it. We are free to choose our own ways to deal with sorrow. 

The recently released Thank You, I’m Sorry dealt with a woman’s inner conflicts while she tried to swallow the death of her husband.

In Good Grief, we are shown a man who has lost the closest person he ever had to himself. 

The story limits itself to his grief, and how it changes with the occurrence of new events. Even though friendship comes to the rescue during such times, is it enough?

Both films touch upon a similar theme without resorting to clamor.

Image Credits: Netflix

Good Grief is rooted in reality and doesn’t have anything to do with uniqueness. A human feeling is put on display in a controlled surrounding.

It’s naturally mellow and authentic and runs at a pace that life usually occurs at. Most importantly, the film doesn’t bring big, huge elements to change the tempo or mood.

From the start and the middle phase to the climax and the end, Good Grief embraces life’s normal, undisturbed march.

You will love the conversation between friends, their bonding, understanding of each other, and the innate assurance of having each other’s back.

Good Grief must be praised for its writing more than anything else.

The communication channels used by the creators reach fruition without becoming dull only because the writing is poignant.

The dialogues have depth without any shards of flashiness.

Image Credits: Netflix

In one of the scenes, a character says, ‘To avoid sadness is also to avoid love.’ It’s this ability of Good Grief to speak without speaking too much that touches your heart.

Many such interactions leave you inspired. Moreover, the music is soothing. The songs they have used heart-warmingly take over the screen.

I loved the timing of Neil Young’s ‘Only Love Can Break Your Heart.‘ The film’s screenplay flows well and moves according to the plot’s trajectory.

It has a somber touch attached to it most of the time. Good Grief’s emotional space is sturdy, too.

You may not cry watching the film, but the feeling of loss does keep playing on the back of your mind.

How are the Performances?

Daniel Levy plays Marc in Good Grief. He has a highly impromptu set of expressions, which is endless.

The actor delivers dialogue with ease and makes himself comfortable with the plot.

His screen presence is surprisingly astute. There are several scenes where he rightfully appears calm and contained. 

Ruth Negga as Sophie displays a free-flowing individual’s zigzag life.

The fact that she enjoys herself gives Good Grief moments of sparkling enthusiasm. She blends amazingly well with the theme of the movie. 

Image Credits: Netflix

Himesh Patel is Thomas in the story. Despite outlining a quiet individual, his act leaves a mark on the audience.

You would like him playing a supportive part in an engagingly real manner.

His aura is sure to resonate with people who spend time in their friend circle in Thomas’ position.

Arnaud Valois has a late entry and appears in a very short role. Still, his portrayal is impressive.

The change in the course of the narration comes around nicely, thanks to him.

What Doesn’t Work for Good Grief?

It is really tough to pick points of criticism when there is hardly anything wrong. 

The only place the movie struggles, in my opinion, is in the first half when the flipside of the story begins to unfold.

A bit more consistency would have helped the narration during that period.

Stream or Skip?

Good Grief is a beautiful film and you should watch it. 

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